Wattville school gets R1-m boost

Maile Matsimela Lesabe Secondary School, in Wattville, is receiving a RImillion boost from Carnival City and its empowerment partner, the Afrisun Trust.

In an exciting new development, the two embarked on a social development project that will positively impact on the lives of everyone involved.

The project includes:

  • facilitating a basic computer training workshop for all educators, to ensure they are proficient in using basic Microsoft programmes.
  • Upgrading of 18 classrooms and providing an outdoor area where youngsters can sit down to eat their lunch or study.
  • Providing an outdoor play centre for pre-school children, installing air-conditioning units in the computer room, a motorised gate and intercom at the main entrance, and shelving and storage space for the media computer centre and science laboratories.
  • Refurbishing and repairing two ablution blocks.
  • Equipping the existing kitchen with plugs, lighting, plumbing, a scullery area, kitchen units and a gas stove.
  • Providing an outdoor study area for Grade Seven, plus a micro sports field for soccer, rugby and cricket, an athletics track, netball court and even outdoor chess.
  • Planting a garden at the main entrance to the school, as well as gardens to surround the canteen and outdoor dining areas, and a special garden for the Grade Sevens.
  • Clearing up unused land and establishing a food tunnel garden and special worm compost system. The garden will be planted with seedlings and will be watered using a special irrigation system. On site training, mentorship and basic landscape training will be given to those who are responsible for maintaining this area. Four unemployed community members will be given the opportunity to turn the vegetable garden into a business. After the needs of the school have been taken care of, they will be able to sell the remaining produce to the community.
  • The Owl Box Project will be introduced at the school as a way of teaching children respect for animals through rearing young owls, while simultaneously eliminating the rodent problem without the use of poisons.

Afrisun Trust chief executive officer Sandy Hattingh said their vision can best be summed up by the Confucius quote: Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, but teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime. The school, first started in 1952 by Noel Mlokoti, who was the only teacher at the time, now caters for 512 learners, mostly from lower income homes.

After 46 years, the building is in desperate need of repairs and maintenance and, to answer this need, the Afrisun Trust has undertaken to commit R 1 -m to the project, said Hattingh.

She added that contractors and other service providers selected for the job are all small, black economic compliant local enterprises, many of which originally received support and funding from Carnival City to either develop their skills or kickstart their businesses.

BENONI CITY TIMES 02 Dec 2011